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May 11, 2012 - Word of the Day


Everyone has an accent of some kind when speaking English. It can identify the part of the world in which you live or from which you have come. The accent is noticed by the person who listens to it. I come from the midwest, so you might notice that I have a midwestern accent. I grew up in and around Chicago, so I have a Chicago accent. You can also say that I have an American accent. It's not a bad thing to have an accent.

  • People who live in the southern part of the United States have a southern accent.
  • People who live on the west coast have a west coast accent.
  • My friend, Lenny, grew up in New York. He has a New York accent.
  • There are many different kinds of accents heard among people from Great Britain. People who have a British accent and whose grammar and usage of English is perfect command a tremendous amount of respect.

Some of my students don't like the accent they have when they speak English. I always tell them not to worrry about it too much because it's a very American thing to have an accent. We are, after all, a national of immigrants. Go to any American city and you'll hear accents from around the world:

  • A person from Mexico has a Spanish accent.
  • A person from China has a Chinese accent.
  • A person from France has a French accent.
  • A person from Somalia has a Somali accent.
  • A person from Jordan has a Middle-eastern accent.
  • A person from Russia has a Russian accent.
  • If you meet someone from Europe and you don't know that person's country of origin, you can say that he or she has a European accent.

If you are really worried about your accent, there are accent reduction exercises you can practice on many different websites. On this website, these pronunciation exercises might help. But as I said before, it's not a bad thing to have an accent, and no one should judge you on that.


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